Blogs & Opinion

Coach's Corner: Powerful partnerships on show at Netball London Live on International Women's Day

Features Posted 5th March 2014 view comments

Coach, player, author, commentator, analyst... Anita Navin's list of netballing expertise is long.

So here at Sky Sports we've asked her to take up the post in our Coach's Corner to analyse all the big talking points from the ZEO Netball Superleague...

Powerful Partners, precious pairings...

ANITA'S VIEW: Hertfordshire Mavericks and Surrey Storm go head to head on International Women's Day on Saturday, March 8. It's a day to celebrate the achievements of women from the past, present and future.

The Greenway/Dunn partnership could prove key for Surrey Storm at Netball London Live

The Greenway/Dunn partnership could prove key for Surrey Storm at Netball London Live

Mavericks, previous winners of the Superleague competition, are up against an in-form Surrey Storm, who are stamping their ground at the top of the table with a clear mission to take home this coveted trophy at the end of the season.

Storm have scored over 60 goals in four of the six matches played so far and the consistency of Rachel Dunn leaves any young shooter in the game inspired to be as successful in future years.

She is clinical at the centre pass ensuring she prepares early using her vision to see her GA on the line and is always seeking to be the first phase option

Anita Navin
Quotes of the week

So, fitting in with the theme for Women's Day of 'inspiring change' and 'challenging the status quo', let's take a look at the pairs who might just turn these words into netball actions and success on Saturday.

Slick and Stormy

The most talked-about pairing is currently Tamsin Greenway and Dunn for Storm, who have created such a special relationship since the age of 15.

The connection and confidence this partnership displays is second to none, with Greenway fearless in her release and having a high success rate in delivering the ball to Dunn for a shooting opportunity.

Greenway has this inate ability to see space and intuitively open up the court for her fellow attacking team mates. Dunn's accuracy to date is top of the league with shooting percentages in excess of 90 per cent.

Mavericks will, I am sure, mix up the defence at the Storm centre pass but a 2v1 on Greenway could be an effective ploy to prevent the first time movement off the line, restricting the route way for Greenway to receive in the mid channel.

When the three defensive players jump over the line to put on a '3 over' style of defence, Greenway will intuitively pull the defence wide and sneak through the gaps. So who will challenge this slick partnership and ring in those changes?

Defensive denial

Lindsay Keable (GK) and Layla Guscoth (GD) are an emerging pair in the competition who have now started to communicate more effectively on court.

Keable has an insight into the whole of Dunn's game through her international commitments and will be trying to reduce the space available behind her and stop her taking this high ball near the post. If Dunn moves out of the circle then the defence will definitely deny here and delay her movements back in.

Keable has the height to challenge the aerial ball but must focus at all times on the ball. As we know Greenway will look for the head to drop and quickly capitalise by delivering a ball to Dunn. The GK movement from an in-front position to behind Dunn can, on occasions, deceive and may be a tactic we see on Saturday.

Guscoth brings greater elevation into this defence pairing and will be striving for an increased tally of turnovers this weekend. If any pair can disrupt Dunn and Greenway it will be these two, as long as communication is slick and timely from Keable as the ball moves down court.

Sister act

Sasha Corbin and Kadeen Corbin, the talented and inspiring sister act, pose a threat for the Storm defence. The athleticism of this duo is awesome and the speed in which Sasha (WA)moves to the circle edge is a key strength of this Mavericks attack.

Defences are often caught chasing Sasha Corbin so a diamond style defence of the centre pass at the second phase may be beneficial in disrupting this dynamo. This would be characteristic of a zone-type defence where defenders mark and take a space, not the player.

Kadeen Corbin's shooting has been a little inconsistent so far but she still manoeuvres herself into free space with her sudden-stop, one-step moves and ability to take the aerial ball against all defenders she is up against. All that said, Mavericks continue to play a range of combinations in this shooting circle.

Intelligent marking

Finally then, let's take a look at the defensive pair of Storm who will be working to keep the shooting opportunities of Mavericks to a minimum.

Hannah Reid and Katy Holland have developed a remarkable understanding of each other's movements and whereabouts on the court and currently cause havoc with their tracking and tight one-on-one defence.

This intelligent pairing rarely follow a shooter who rotates but pitch themselves in the middle of the shooting circle and will use their long reach to pick off the intercept.

So, will it be the blue of Storm or the purple of Mavericks who succeed at Netball London Live?

On a day where people often celebrate wearing purple ribbons, there is undoubtedly a sense that the blue of storm is about to stamp authority on the purple of Mavericks.

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